Peer navigation is the process of patient navigation and delivery of services to HIV-positive persons in order to assist in client access to the medical, social and supportive services needed to maintain his or her health. A Peer navigator can help you through the process of paperwork and acronyms you may not understand.
At Midway Specialty Care Center in St Lucie County, peer navigators are integral to medication and treatment adherence and provide specialized services in a professional environment. Peer navigators work to encourage engagement into care and support medication and treatment adherence by providing education, resources, and mentorship. The role of the peer navigator is to provide a bridge between providers and clients that facilitates the medical and psychosocial care of the client.
A peer navigator is someone who has accepted his/her HIV diagnosis, has learned to live with the disease and manage its daily challenges. The peer navigator serves as a role model who provides reliable information, steers clients in the proper direction to meet their care needs, and helps them overcome barriers to remaining in care.
Peers provide persons living with HIV (PLWH)/AIDS with guidance and advocacy beyond that which can be provided by case managers and clinicians, through experienced guidance and culturally sensitive, plain language messages. The programs aim is to improve health outcomes for newly diagnosed clients, those transferring their HIV care to another clinic or organization, or those returning to care. This is a voluntary program and clients must agree to receive peer support services prior to the start of services.
There are currently 14 Peer Navigator programs funded by the HIV Section. The programs are located in St. Lucie, Escambia, Okaloosa, Leon, Duval, Alachua, Orange, Hillsborough, Sarasota, Palm Beach, and Miami-Dade counties.
Provide linkage to care to patients in a timely and coordinated manner and maintain medical stability and suppressed viral load
Provide clients with healthcare navigation and social services
Work together with clients to support treatment (medication) adherence
Assist patients with building skills and knowledge needed to achieve and maintain a stable health status
Link to web resources related to Peer Navigation Program: